This is according to Dinah Mogashoa, a Diepsloot resident and neighbour. She alleged the woman would leave her children at home alone. “The neighbours would call the grandmother to come get the kids. She did this every single weekend,” Mogashoa said.
The mutilated body of seven-month-old Junior was found in a Diepsloot shack earlier this month. His two-year-old sibling was found unharmed. According to police spokesman Captain Tsekiso Mofokeng, they believe rats ate the infant’s foot. However, the result of the autopsy has not yet been revealed.
The 23-year-old mother and her boyfriend appeared in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court yesterday. The couple will spend the holidays behind bars, as the investigation has yet to be concluded.
Police have previously confirmed the woman is facing a second charge of child neglect. A day before the death of the infant, the mother fetched both her children from their grandmother’s house. The children were placed in the grandmother’s care after the first case of neglect was opened.
“We are looking into the possibility that she stole her children from the grandmother,” Capt Mofokeng told The Citizen.
The grandmother of the infant sat quietly in court yesterday. She said it was a difficult time for her. “I was always very worried about my grandchildren. I know my daughter has a problem,” she said.
She added that her two-year-old granddaughter is still with social services but she would like to take her to family in KwaZulu-Natal for the holidays.
The State said it would “vigorously” oppose bail for both applicants. The mother’s boyfriend indicated he would like to apply for bail as soon as his legal status in the country is known. He told the court his shack in Diepsloot had been destroyed and his residency papers were destroyed with his home.
Both accused will appear in court on January 21.